I am so tired of this, she decides. Tired of undergoing treatment, tired of having to be so reliant on people, tired of being made fun of, and tired of herself. She hunches over her study desk and drags a penknife across her pale white wrist lightly. It traces a long jagged path across the sun-deprived skin. The crimson blood that starts seeping out from the uneven wound startles even herself. She doesn’t realise that she’d cut herself deep enough to break a capillary.
She examines her limbs in the mirror.Dark, angry bruises map the location of the cruel needle stabs she receives when she undergoes chemotherapy, a cruel atlas reminding her of the pain that is to come with each passing day. Never mind, she says to her reflection.
I must be tired. I’ll just sleep it off. Maybe tomorrow will be better. Her reflection seems to grin wickedly at this pathetic hope. As she gets into bed, she says the same little prayer every night, for her parents to be happy, for herself that she might not lead such a lonely life and that she might miraculously get better one day, that tomorrow might be better than today.But somehow, each day seems to get impossibly worse than the last one. She falls into a rocky dream.
The next day proves to be equally bad. Her classmates make fun of her falling hair. They don’t know what she’s going through, for she never talks.
She never shares her life with anyone. Why should she? They’ll never care. They call her lowbrow names to illicit a few laughs at her expense.
Egghead! Baldy! They yell, each time they see her. To them, she is the mousy balding girl who sits in the corner and has no friends.She aches to make friends, to say hello to everyone, to say something. But she never does. At the end of the day, amidst the gleefully chattering crowd of students mingling about, she makes a quiet departure and heads home alone, feeling lonely and depressed. Wishing that her parents would be at home, ready with smiles and hugs to welcome her back from school though she knows from experience that never happens.
Today is no exception. Nothingness greets her. Even Rodney the cat gives her a reproachful stare and slinks off elsewhere.
She takes out her knife, her only friend and distraction from the misery of life. This time, she glides it over and over again on her right thigh. Absentmindedly, she carves in no certain pattern. Her skin is her canvas.
She simply stares, spellbound at the red liquid that starts to stain her thigh. As she begins to feel a little giddy from blood loss, she makes up her mind for the first time ever. She begins to script a letter, careful not to let her redness get onto the white paper. She takes a long time to finish her masterpiece, leaves it for anyone who might even care to read.
She heads for the kitchen. She looks down from the window and sees nothing but black. From the eleventh floor, you cannot see much at night, she thinks to herself, feeling a giggle rise irrationally in her throat as she clambers over the edge of the parapet. Her last thoughts are of the cruelty of her classmates, her suffering at each treatment session, and her busy parents who make no time for her. It’s over, she thinks with relief, and takes a step into the night sky, the black enveloping her small figure as she plunges into eternal darkness.